In today’s world, sustainability is a key consideration for businesses in any industry. One often overlooked aspect of sustainability is the management of by-products or waste incurred in the manufacturing process. In the world of printing, release liner, and matrix waste can be a big contributor to overall waste numbers. In the following blog post, we will explore various options available for recycling and repurposing these packaging by-products.
Release Liner Options:
Release liner is the paper or film material that carries a label, sticker, tape, or another “sticky” item. Once the label is applied to the product or container, the release liner is disposed of.
Release liner is, however, recyclable. Small quantities of release liner can be included in sorted office waste or mixed paper for recycling. For larger amounts of bleached release paper, it is possible to bale them without cores and ship truckload quantities directly to paper mills for repulping. Similarly, clean PET release liner can be taken by local recyclers in small quantities, while certain PET manufacturing companies accept debris-free PET in truckload volumes.
There are also over 30 dedicated release liner recycling centers in the US and Canada, offering an efficient solution for recycling these materials. View an updated map of these facilities here.
Matrix Waste Options:
Matrix waste is the material left over after pressure-sensitive material is die-cut. In simple terms, if you think of a sheet of stickers, it is the sticky layer that is left behind with the outline of all of the stickers. Traditionally considered non-recyclable due to the adhesive on the backside of this material, matrix waste now has a viable solution. Non-vinyl pressure-sensitive adhesive (PSA) matrix waste can be transformed into fuel pellets. These pellets can then be used as an alternative to coal in large industrial boilers, reducing emissions and promoting cleaner energy. Additionally, these pellets can be burned in large cement kilns for energy on a smaller scale.
North America currently has about 75 centers specializing in converting matrix and other non-recyclable waste into valuable waste-to-energy products. See the most up-to-date map of these locations here.
At CRG we firmly believe in creating sustainable solutions and being environmental stewards. By transforming packaging by-products like release liner and matrix waste, we can make a significant positive impact on the environment. Through responsible waste management and recycling initiatives, we can reduce the burden on landfills, conserve natural resources, and mitigate the carbon footprint associated with packaging production.
CRG is Here to Help:
As your reliable partner for release liner solutions, blank shipping, inventory and product labels, and cost-effective pressure-sensitive materials, CRG is here to guide you in making sustainable choices. We understand the importance of aligning business goals with environmental considerations. Let us help you achieve your goals, sustainable or otherwise!